A Dunkin Donut©John Chapple/Rex Shutterstock

US-based Dunkin’ Brands has become the latest company to commit to sourcing 100% cage-free eggs, although it will take 10 years to complete the move.

The coffee and baked goods brand, which holds the number-two position in the competitive US breakfast market, confirmed it intended to source 10% of the eggs for US breakfast sandwiches from non-caged birds by the end of next year.

By 2025, all its eggs will be cage free, equivalent to 1.4 million birds, according to the Humane Society of the United States.

See also: Cage-free eggs gather pace in US market

In addition, Dunkin’ Brands has pledged to map its international supply chain to determine the feasibility of moving globally to 100% cage-free eggs.

It follows similar moves by competitors Taco Bell, Burger King, Starbucks and McDonald’s, which have all committed to switching to cage-free systems by 2025.

Christine Riley Miller, senior director of corporate social responsibility for Dunkin’ Brands, said: “We have a responsibility to ensure the humane treatment of animals, an issue we know that is important to both our franchisee community and our loyal guests.”

The company moved into the breakfast market in the mid-1990s, first selling a range of bagels before moving to breakfast sandwiches to meet changing consumer patterns.

Jeff Miller, vice-president of product innovation, said at the recent International Egg Commission conference in Berlin that constant innovation and good marketing were vital to keep ahead in the competitive US breakfast market.

“The pace of innovation is faster than ever. Consumers are savvy and our competitors have continued to see growth in the breakfast market. Businesses like mine need to respond quickly,” he told delegates at the conference in September.